Legislative Affairs

Legislative Affairs

Learn how ATD Legislative Affairs protects and promotes franchised auto and truck dealerships’ interests before Congress.

In April, the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) issued its final rule, “Greenhouse Gas Emissions Standards for Heavy-Duty Vehicles – Phase 3,” targeting fleet-wide greenhouse gas (GHG) reductions for model year 2027 through 2032.  The rule will force the broad adoption of heavy-duty zero-emission vehicles (ZEVs), despite currently being less than 1% of sales. An electric truck has upfront costs two to three times more expensive than a comparable diesel vehicle, and the U.S. lacks a national commercial vehicle charging network, which makes customer adoption of heavy-duty ZEVs and their day-to-day use impractical. In March, a study released by the Clean Freight Coalition found that full electrification of the U.S. commercial truck fleet would require nearly $1 trillion of infrastructure investment and grid network upgrades to meet demand. ATD is opposed to EPA’s final GHG Phase 3 rule as it will have unprecedented negative impacts on commercial trucking, U.S. businesses, and consumers. FAQs regarding EPA’s new rule can be found here and ATD’s public comments regarding the rule can be found here.

Congress should repeal the outdated 12% federal excise tax (FET) imposed on new heavy-duty trucks to accelerate turnover of America’s aging truck fleet, which will lead to cleaner, safer trucks on the road. First enacted in 1917 to help pay for World War I, this tax routinely adds $22,000 or more to the price of a new heavy-duty truck. The FET is levied in addition to the nearly $40,000 per truck cost due to recent federal emissions and fuel-economy mandates. The FET can also add more than $50,000 to the price of an electric or hydrogen fuel-cell truck, which cost more than twice the price of internal combustion engine trucks. While new trucks have made significant environmental gains, such as reducing nitrogen oxide and particulate matter emissions by at least 98%, the FET remains a costly barrier to the purchase of new trucks equipped with the latest environmental technologies. With 47% of the Class 8 trucks on the road today over 10 years old, FET repeal would immediately benefit the environment by incentivizing the replacement of older trucks with cleaner, safer and more fuel-efficient trucks. ATD and eight trucking organizations sent a letter to Senate Finance Committee and House Ways and Means Committee leadership in July urging passage of bipartisan FET repeal legislation, the “Modern, Clean, and Safe Trucks Act of 2023” (H.R. 1440/S. 694). Members of Congress are urged to cosponsor H.R. 1440/S. 694 to incentivize the replacement of older trucks with newer, greener, and safer trucks.

Advocates for “right to repair” legislation claim that independent vehicle repair shops do not have access to the parts or data necessary to repair vehicles. However, this concern was rectified years ago, and the information independent shops need to repair vehicles is available from every truck manufacturer. Unlike previous “right to repair” bills, H.R. 906 has little to do with repairing a vehicle. Instead, the bill would compel truck manufacturers to provide any “aftermarket parts manufacturer” the information necessary “to produce or offer compatible aftermarket parts,” i.e., parts not made by the truck manufacturer. This legislation would also give any third party unfettered access to data from vehicles, which raises privacy, vehicle security, and safety concerns. The bill is also overbroad as it regulates heavy-duty vehicles the same as light-duty vehicles. In June, the ATD Board of Line Representatives sent a letter to House Energy and Commerce Committee leaders opposing this legislation. Members of Congress should oppose H.R. 906.

Catalytic converters are being stolen at increasingly higher rates due to their valuable metals, such as rhodium, platinum and palladium. Gas-powered medium-duty trucks are often targeted by thieves, as many of these vehicles have catalytic converters that can be easily accessed. Since catalytic converters are not readily traceable, there is a lucrative market for these stolen parts. These thefts are costing businesses and vehicle owners millions of dollars. The bipartisan “Preventing Auto Recycling Theft Act” (PART Act) (H.R. 621/S. 154) would help law enforcement combat this crime by providing a national framework that would mark catalytic converters, establish federal criminal penalties, and create a more transparent market that deters its theft. ATD and 20 other organizations sent a letter to House and Senate Commerce Committee leaders in support of the PART Act last year. Congress should pass the PART Act to help law enforcement combat the theft of emission devices and add emission control systems for heavy-duty trucks to the bill, which would create a more transparent market to deter its theft.



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NADA Legislative Affairs Staff

About Legislative Affairs

Learn how NADA Legislative Affairs protects and promotes franchised auto and truck dealerships' interests before Congress. Find the latest legislation affecting the automotive retail industry, including issues such as auto finance, tax policy, vehicle commerce, fuel economy and the environment, as well as grassroots.